Reducing the rates of injurious and fatal drunk driving accidents that occur annually in the United States is a worthy goal. However, federal regulators and state legislators may be soon be approaching this goal in ways that ultimately harms more than helps America’s driving population. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) recently recommended that states lower their legal blood alcohol limits for offenses related to driving under the influence (DUI).
Currently, drivers may have trace amounts of alcohol in their system while driving legally. Generally, unless a motorist possesses a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .08 or higher, he or she will not incur DUI penalties if pulled over and breath or blood tested. The logic behind this limit is fairly simple. Drivers should only be punished if they are driving while impaired and therefore pose a danger to themselves and others. Without a level of .08 BAC or higher, drivers are not generally impaired by the trace amounts of alcohol in their systems.